Image: North West Cambridge Development.

Photon Energy has completed the installation of 384kW of rooftop solar at a new development north-west of Cambridge in a project more than two years in the making.

The multi-phased development is funded by the University of Cambridge and comprises around 3,000 new homes, community facilities and commercial outlets. Photon secured a tender from main contractor Wates to install solar on various buildings making up Lot 2 of the development.

That particular lot included key worker units, local shops and a café situated around a market square, and the solar element had to be designed specifically to fit different roof elements, including ‘brown roof’ areas covered with soil as well as sections laid with pebbles to ease flooding.

The new system will complement an existing array on the site, completed earlier this year by G&H Sustainability.

That first-phase system witnessed nearly 1,500 panels installed across 12 buildings at the development, creating a 373kW array.

Due to roof area limits, Photon elected to install SunPower 327 PV modules, mounted to K2 Systems’ D-Dome systems and connected to Zeversolar inverters.

The resulting system comprises 1,175 modules, totalling 384.23kWp in capacity.

The system is expected to generate more than 260,000kWh of electricity each year for residents of the development.

Photon said the project required extensive management to navigate around other trades on site during construction and to manage restrictions placed on roof access.

Lefteris Giraleas, senior engineer at Photon Energy, said: “This was a challenging project, requiring coordination with the many other trades working on site at the same time. We worked well with the team at Wates, ensuring the installation went as smoothly as possible and was completed on time.”